Title: Ion Bernstein waves in a plasma with a kappa velocity distribution

Using a Vlasov-Poisson model, a numerical investigation of the dispersion relation for ion Bernstein waves in a kappa-distributed plasma has been carried out. The dispersion relation is found to depend significantly on the spectral index of the ions, κ{sub i}, the parameter whose smallness is a measure of the departure from thermal equilibrium of the distribution function. Over all cyclotron harmonics, the typical Bernstein wave curves are shifted to higher wavenumbers (k) if κ{sub i} is reduced. For waves whose frequency lies above the lower hybrid frequency, ω{sub LH}, an increasing excess of superthermal particles (decreasing κ{sub i}) reduces the frequency, ω{sub peak}, of the characteristic peak at which the group velocity vanishes, while the associated k{sub peak} is increased. As the ratio of ion plasma to cyclotron frequency (ω{sub pi}/ω{sub ci}) is increased, the fall-off of ω at large k is smaller for lower κ{sub i} and curves are shifted towards larger wavenumbers. In the lower hybrid frequency band and harmonic bands above it, the frequency in a low-κ{sub i} plasma spans only a part of the intraharmonic space, unlike the Maxwellian case, thus exhibiting considerably less coupling between adjacent bands for low κ{sub i}. It is suggested thatmore » the presence of the ensuing stopbands may be a useful diagnostic for the velocity distribution characteristics. The model is applied to the Earth's plasma sheet boundary layer in which waves propagating perpendicularly to the ambient magnetic field at frequencies between harmonics of the ion cyclotron frequency are frequently observed.« less

School of Chemistry and Physics, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban 4000 (South Africa)

Publication Date:

OSTI Identifier:

22218499

Resource Type:

Journal Article

Resource Relation:

Journal Name: Physics of Plasmas; Journal Volume: 20; Journal Issue: 10; Other Information: (c) 2013 AIP Publishing LLC; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)

Country of Publication:

United States

Language:

English

Subject:

70 PLASMA PHYSICS AND FUSION TECHNOLOGY; 71 CLASSICAL AND QUANTUM MECHANICS, GENERAL PHYSICS; BERNSTEIN MODE; BOLTZMANN-VLASOV EQUATION; BOUNDARY LAYERS; CYCLOTRON HARMONICS; DISPERSION RELATIONS; DISTRIBUTION FUNCTIONS; ELECTROMAGNETIC RADIATION; IONS; LOWER HYBRID CURRENT DRIVE; LOWER HYBRID HEATING; MAGNETIC FIELDS; NUMERICAL ANALYSIS; PLASMA SHEET; PLASMA WAVES; POISSON EQUATION; THERMAL EQUILIBRIUM; VELOCITY